books, bookshelfies

Bookshelfie: Random Girl’s Own hardbacks

You know I think this might be the very last shelf you haven’t seen*! And given that I’ve been telling you that I’m planning a reorganisation, maybe means that this is my cue to actually pull my finger out and do it. Although I do need some more shelves to do this properly. Anyway, here you see a very random selection of hardback Girl’s Own or Gir’ls Own adjacent hardbacks. Some of them are truly terrible – I’m looking at you The Girls of Dancy Dene – some of them are by authors that I keep elsewhere, including my only two hardback Elinor M Brent-Dyers. Why only two? Well because I already own all the Chalet School books at least once, mostly twice and I can’t bring myself to get rid of either set, so the chances of me getting rid of any if I get a set of hardbacks is small, even if we don’t think about how much that would cost. Anyway, this is a little shelf in the bottom of one of my built ins – down the room from all the fancy hardbacks, Viragos and downstairs Pratchetts – but the shelves above it are glass and not wood and they are used for my bits of antique silver. Because that’s the sort of person I am.

*apart from the to-read bookshelf, which I’m not sure I’m brave enough to expose in full. I’ll think on it.


Bookshelfie: The Chaos Shelves – part three

Is this the most mixed up shelf of them all? I think so. This is an insane mix of non fiction, cozy crime, historical crime and romantic comedies. You can see a couple of hardback Meg Langslows, a few previous BotWs – like A Kim Jong-Il Production, The Rest of Us Just Live Here, The Year of Living Danishly and Sorcerer to the Crown.

In fact, thinking about it this might be the shelf with the highest amont of recommended books of any of them because the back row has Euny Hong, Negroland, the Unfinished Palazzo, Swan Song, Underground Railroad, Somewhere Inside of Happy, A Very Big House in the Country, A Dangerous Crossing and The Madwoman Upstairs. And why is that? Well it’s because this is where the hardbacks and larger books that I want to keep but that don’t belong with anything else live – and why do I want to keep stuff usually? Because it’s good. And a lot of these are non fiction or books where I don’t own other stuff by the same author, so they don’t have another logical home to go to. So there it is. It still needs reorganising though…


Bookshelfie: The Chaos Shelves – part two

As I said in the first Chaos Shelves post, this is where it all gets a bit bonkers and disorganised. The backwards hardbacks are three of the later Pink Carnation novels – the paperbacks of some of the others are on the back shelf. There’s an Aunty Lee book – and there’s another on the shelf behind. The Residence is here – even though the other Kate Andersen Brower books are in the front room on the Hardback no-fiction shelf. There are the computer games. A couple of Claire Sandy books, a couple of Jill Shalvis ones – and a few more on the back shelf. Behind them there are some old favourite Katie Ffordes, then the Deanna Raybourn Lady Julia Grey‘s that I own in paperback and a couple of Tracy Grants. I’ve owned that Mallory Towers omnibus since I was about 10, but it won’t fit on the children’s book shelves – in fact there are some more children’s books behind as well – the Carbonel series, Mr Majeika, the Flower Fairies and one of The Beat series that all returned to me from mum and dad’s attic when we moved into this house three years ago. I don’t quite know why we still have that Sport book, except that it was given to Him Indoors and given how few of the books in this house are his I feel bad about getting rid of any of his. There’s former Recommendsday pick Standard Deviation and some old computer games. Oh and there’s another copy of Gone with the Windsors on the back shelf – that I wish I’d found a couple of weeks ago, because mum wanted to read it again and ended up buying her own copy… Basically this is a bookshelf in very great need of a good sort out, except that I don’t know where I’m going to put the stuff if they’re not here!


Bookshelfie: The Chaos Shelves – part one

Oh, ho ho Merry Christmas We’ve reached the bits of my bookshelves that I try not to pay too much attention to, because they are such a state. I keep telling myself that I’m going to sort them out, and then losing the will to live and giving up on it until I add some more bookshelves to the house! This one actually starts fairly well – you can’t see it on the photo but the back row is actually very neat and is mostly seriesand that spills over to the front where as you can see I have the Lady Sherlock and Charlotte Holmes series. Behind them are the Steph Plums and the rest of the Janet Evanovich collection and then the Christina Jones, Melissa Nathan and the bits of Susan Elizabeth Philips’ Chicago Stars series that I own in paper. The the rest of the front is odds and ends of things that don’t have a better home to go to – a Paul Charles that doesn’t match the rest of the set in format, size or design. Odds and ends in paperback and bits of series that won’t fit elsewhere. But it could be worse… and that is yet to come.


Bookshelfie: Modern (mostly) Middle Grade

We’re getting to a point now where there aren’t a lot of nice neat and tidy shelves for me to show you before we get to what I think of as the Chaos Shelves. But then as I’ve been promising all year that I’m planning to reorganise some of the shelves and show you the results, then at least you’ll have seen the before and after when it happens. Anyway, I don’t imagine that this shelf will change much in any reorganisation. This is the bookshelf in the back spare bedroom. This has mostly been my office over the last nearly two years, but it’s also where any young people who might stay with us would sleep, so it made sense to use the shelves in there (left by the previous owners, who used it as their kids bedroom) for books suitable for any young people who might stay, and it also tends to be where the graphic novel end of my book collection ends up. And there are quite a few familiar books on here – recent BotW Piglettes, Bloodlust and Bonnet and The Unforgettable Guinevere St Clair and less recent BotWs The Good Thieves, Carry On and Pumpkinheads. There’s also various series that have come up at various points – like the Wells and Wong books that I own in paperback, the Lumberjanes and Fence graphic novels and the Tiffany Aching novels from the Discworld series. It’s starting to look a little full, but I’m not sure there’s anything here that I’m prepared to get rid of, so when it gets full it’s likely to be a case of moving stuff to other places rather than a rationalisation situation…


Bookshelfie: Bottom shelf hardbacks

So. As you can probably tell, this is the shelf that has some of Him Indoors’ books on it. Apparently I can’t have all the bookshelves to myself, so I gave him a section of one of the downstairs bookshelves, which I personally thought was very nice of me – it means he can keep his books handy like I keep my favourites handy, even though what I don’t know that he actually rereads them! To be fair I’ve read the Bill Bryson, some of the Guy Martin, the Ben MacIntyre and the Ian Fleming’s Commandos. And at this point I can’t remember if Blitzed was originally mine or his, but we have both read it! Of the definitely mine there’s the Noirville Anthology that I helped judge, and The Color Purple was one of my A Level books – although this isn’t my copy from back then, it’s one I have acquired since. Then I’ve written about a lot of the others too – The Riviera Set, Kick, Queen Bees and Frannie Langton.

Like a lot of the shelves, this is probably due for a tidy and a reorganise, but when I will get around to that is anyone’s guess!


Bookshelfie: A whole lot of Viragos

I mean this does pretty much exactly what it says on the tin – although I hadn’t quite realised that that was what I had created until I started looking at it for this post. The Angela Thirkells I have already written about – and I’m still annoyed that the spines don’t all match, even if the covers do – and the Nancy Spains have had more than one mention too as Death Goes on Skis was a Book of the Week, Cinderella goes to the morgue was in last week’s recommendsday and Poison for Teacher was in the boarding schools post. There’s a little collection of plays at the far end, and then it’s what you could loosely term my A Level reading favourites. I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings was on my A Level summer reading list in the summer of sixth form and I thought it was so brilliant that I went out and brought all the other volumes – and carried on buying Maya Angelou’s new stuff as it came out. And then I also studied First World War Literature and read the whole extended reading list of novels – and these are the bits I kept because they spoke to me the most. Except that I’ve lost my copy of Goodbye to All That in one of my moves and I’m refusing to replace it until I find the edition I used to have or a prettier one. I can’t help myself like that. The only other things on there are Diary of a Provincial Lady and Frost in May, both of which are going to get bumped if many more Thirkells or Nancy Spains appear! It’s a classy shelf of excellent books that I don’t feel like I have to justify if people spot them. And yes, I know, I shouldn’t feel that I have to justify my reading but sometimes people make you feel like you do.


Bookshelfie: Mixed bag of favourites

I struggled with what to call this shelf because, well, there’s no obvious theme. It’s mostly historical – fiction and non fiction – but with a sprinkling of romance, a couple of essay collections, some non fiction and translated fiction. But there’s a lot here that I have written about before. My love of Laurie Graham is well known – here you see one of my (three) copies of Gone with the Windsors, plus the rest of my hard copies of her books. I cannot tell you how much it annoys me that they’re many different sizes and formats. There’s a gaggle of previous BotWs too – Love Lettering, Evvie Drake Starts Over, and then stuff I’ve mentioned in other posts like The Editor, Flappers and the 1920s/Bright Young Things collection.

In the next reorganisation – whenever that happens – I suspect I’ll try and create a non fiction shelf somewhere and get the Laurie Graham’s onto a shelf with fiction. The trouble there is that large old hardback of Grand Duchess of Nowhere, which limits the options for them somewhat…


Bookshelfie: More Classic Crime

Following on from the mostly Twentieth Century Crime shelf, here we have… even more mostly twentieth century crime! The Inspector Alleyn built up over time as I read them so they did used to share a shelf with Lord Peter. And as mentioned before, the Margery Allinghams did too. You can also see a couple of actual Josephine Teys (not the Nicola Upson ones!), some Edmund Crispin and a few more bits of classic crime. Then it gets a bit random… Glitter and the Gold as mentioned in the Vanderbilt recommendsday, and a few bits and bobs of non fiction – including Peter Crouch, which is Him Indoors’s not mine, but I have to give him some shelf space somewhere right?


Bookshelfie: Twentieth Century (mostly) mystery

Say hello to the Peter Wimsey collection and its current shelf mates. Fun fact: the Margery Allingham*, Gladys Mitchell and Edmund Crispin books used to live on this shelf too, but they got bumped down to the Ngaio Marsh shelf when the British Library crime classics collection got too big – the gap is because there are a couple of books out on loan – BLCCs with my dad and Miss Buncle’s Book with my sister. But as you can see we’re getting tight for space again – especially as I’m getting a new Persephone Book a month at the moment from Little Sis – so this is going to be in need of another reorganisation soon. I can already feel that it’s going to be complicated – it’s one of the narrower shelves in the book case so it looks nicer with shorter books, but I also like to keep similar books together and I’m getting to a point where that’s going to be tricky. Yes, deeply first world problems. I know. Wish me luck. I’ll show you a picture when it’s done…

* Margery Allingham may make an appearance in one of the Nicola Upson Josephine Tey books…